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La Nerthe Les Cassagnes

La Nerthe is an established producer in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, and the vineyards that produce Les Cassagnes, are located next door, just 15kms north up the river. Robert Parker's famous complimentary adjective for Châteauneuf is 'hedonistic', and this second wine from La Nerthe is a fine example of this quality.

Elena Walch Lagrein

Elena Walch Lagrein 2021 Price: $23.95Channel: LCBO Vintages Producer: Elena WalchCountry: ItalyRegion: Alto Adige / SüdtirolAppellation: Alto Adige DOC Grapes: LagreinAlcohol by Volume: 13.5%Sugar Content: 6 grams per litre Elena Walch was an architect who married into the grape growing Walch family and took an interest in wine making. Now, she and her daughters, Julia and Karoline run the family winery. Karoline does the marketing, and I met her a…

Camas Chenin

Anne de Joyeuse Camas Chenin 2021 Price: $19.35Channel: The Living Vine Producer: Anne de JoyeuseCountry: FranceRegion: LanguedocAppellation: Pays d’Oc IGP Grapes: Chenin BlancAlcohol by Volume: 12.5%Sugar Content: Unknown Apparently Anne de Joyeuse was a 16th century duke, friend of the French King Henry III, and a big deal… until he was killed by Huguenots at the Battle of Coutras in 1587 at just 27 years old. Wikipedia has no notes…

JM Raffault Les Picasses

JM Raffault Les Picasses Chinon 2018 Price: $27.12Channel: Le Sommelier Producer: Jean-Maurice RaffaultCountry: FranceRegion: LoireAppellation: Chinon AOP Grapes: Cabernet FrancAlcohol by Volume: 14.5%Sugar Content: Unknown Les Picasses is a famous Loire Valley vineyard site, shared by a few producers, and coveted by more. It’s a plateau formed in the triangular peninsula whose western tip is the confluence of the Loire and the Vienne. It’s in Chinon, on the south side…

Fanti Poggio Torto

Tenuta Fanti Poggio Torto Rosso 2019 Price: $25.99Channel: Le Sommelier Producer: Tenuta FantiCountry: ItalyRegion: Tuscany (Montalcino)Appellation: Toscana IGT Grapes: Sangiovese, Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet SauvignonAlcohol by Volume: 14.5%Sugar Content: Less than 1 gram per litre With roots in Montalcino since the 19th century, the Fanti family has very much been part of the meteorotic rise of Brunello di Montalcino DOCG since the 1970s. And while their Brunello is superb, it’s pricey,…

Casale del Giglio Bellone

Casale del Giglio Bellone 2020 Price: $25.05Channel: Profile Wine Group Producer: Casale del GiglioCountry: ItalyRegion: LazioAppellation: Lazio IGT I wrote about the 2020 Casale del Giglio Bellone recently in my wine column at The Hub. It’s a treat to come across this very Roman white wine when so little of it travels very far from the Eternal City. It’s odd that despite being a perpetual tourist magnet and a literal…

Hidden Bench Nocturn Rosé 2021

Hidden Bench Nocturn Rosé 2021 Price: $24.75Channel: Hidden Bench Estate Winery Producer: Hidden Bench Estate WineryCountry: CanadaRegion: NiagaraAppellation: VQA Grapes: Pinot Noir (75%), Merlot (11%), Malbec (9%), Cabernet Franc (5%)Alcohol by Volume: 12%Sugar Content: 1 gram per litre The Hidden Bench Nocturn rosé is made by the old fashioned saignée method, where juice is ‘bled’ of of red wine fermenting tanks, concentrating whats left behind and producing a fine light…

Planeta Frappato 2019

Planeta Frappato Vittoria 2019 Price: $22.95Channel: LCBO Vintages Producer: PlanetaCountry: ItalyRegion: SicilyAppellation: Vittoria DOC Grapes: FrappatoAlcohol by Volume: 13% Sugar Content: 3 grams per Litre Planeta is both one Sicily’s great pioneering modern wineries and one of its great innovators. Led by the late Diego Planeta, in the last quarter of the 20th century they planted international grape varieties and helped lead the movement that proved Sicily could produce fine…

Château Montfaucon Lirac

Château Montfaucon Lirac 2019 Price: $23.95Channel: LCBO Vintages Producer: Château MontfauconCountry: FranceRegion: Provence (Southern Rhône)Appellation: Lirac AOC Grapes: Grenache (60%), Syrah (30%), Cinsault (10%)Alcohol by Volume: 14.5%Sugar Content: 4 grams per litre The town of Lirac lies on the Right Bank of the Rhône more or less right across the river from Châteauneuf-du-Pape. The soils, the climate and the grapes grown in the vineyards of Lirac are the same as…

Telmo Rodriguez LZ

Telmo Rodriguez Bodega Lanzaga LZ 2020 Price: $22.99 750ml (plus HST, bottle deposit, shipping, etc.)Channel: Lifford Wines & Spirits Producer: Telmo RodriguezCountry: SpainRegion: Rioja AlavesaAppellation: Rioja DOca Grapes: Tempranillo, Graciano, GarnachaAlcohol by Volume: 14%Sugar Content: N/A (dry to taste) Telmo Rodriguez is one of a handful of legendary new wave producers in Rioja, with many projects across the region. But the LZ, from his Lanzaga estate, is a homage to…

Brolio Chianti Classico

Ricasoli Brolio Chianti Classico 2019 Price: $23.95Channel: LCBO Vintages Producer: Ricasoli 1141Country: ItalyRegion: TuscanyAppellation: Chianti Classico DOCG Grapes: Sangiovese 80%, Merlot 15%, Cabernet Sauvignon 5%Alcohol by Volume: 13.5%Sugar Content: 3 grams per litre The Baron Ricasoli, otherwise known as Francesco likes to remind wine journalists that his is one of the oldest family businesses in the world. That may be, but the spirit in the wines being released by the…

Norman Hardie Vieux Chênes

Norman Hardie Sauvignon Blanc Vieux Chêne 2020 Price: $27.20Channel: LCBO or Winery Producer: Norman HardieCountry: CanadaRegion: NiagaraAppellation: VQA Grapes: Sauvignon BlancAlcohol by Volume: 13%Sugar Content: 2 grams per litre Norm Hardie is famous for his Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, but his love of French wine grapes extends beyond these two natives of Burgundy. In the case of the Vieux Chêne the homage is to the Loire and the wine expresses…

Radford Dale Vinum Chenin Blanc

Radford Dale Vinum Chenin Blanc 2020 Price: $19.95 750mlChannel: LCBO Vintages Producer: Radford DaleCountry: South AfricaRegion: StellenboschAppellation: Stellenbosch Grapes: Chenin BlancAlcohol by Volume: 12.5%Sugar Content: 5 grams per litre Ben Radford and Alex Dale’s eponymous winery ticks all the boxes of modern South African production, from sustainable environmental practices to give back programs to address social inequality. They also make sophisticated wines, at every price level, that reflect the terroir…

Jean-Luc Colombo Cape Bleue

Jean-Luc Colombo Cape Bleue Rosé 2021 Price: $20.99 per 750ml (plus HST & bottle deposit)Channel: Profile Wine Group Producer: Jean-Luc ColomboCountry: FranceRegion: LanguedocAppellation: IGP Méditerranée Grapes: 40% Syrah, 40% Cinsault, 20% MourvédreAlcohol by Volume: 13%Sugar Content: N/A (bone dry) Jean-Luc Colmbo is a celebated winemaker from Cornas in the Northern Rhône Valley; a master of Syrah. So, of course it’s Syrah that dominates this just slightly austere and very grown-up rosé…

Famille Perrin Nature

Famille Perrin Nature Côtes du Rhône 2019 Price: $18.95 per 750mlChannel: LCBO Vintages (#948059) Producer: Famille PerrinCountry: FranceRegion: ProvenceAppellation: Côtes du Rhône Grapes: Grenache, SyrahAlcohol by Volume: 13%Sugar Content: 2 grams per litre The Perrin family is one of the most prominent wine concerns in the Southern Rhône valley. They are the owners of the renown Château de Beaucastel in Châteauneuf-du-Pape as well as the producers of the ubiquitous La…

Domaine Montrose Chardonnay

Domaine Montrose Chardonnay 2020 Price: $17.95 per 750ml (+HST & Shipping), sold in cases of 12Channel: Le Sommelier Wine Agency Producer: Domaine MontroseCountry: FranceRegion: LanguedocAppellation: Côtes de Thongues Grapes: ChardonnayAlcohol by Volume: 13%Sugar Content: N/A (bone dry) The estate at Domaine Montrose may have been established 1701 but their Chardonnay is very much in style of the new South of France: gastronomique. The 2020 Domaine Montrose Chardonnay Côtes de Thonge…

Chiarlo Il Principe Langhe Nebbiolo

Michele Chiarlo ‘Il Principe’ 2018 Grapes: NebbioloAlcohol by Volume: 14%Sugar Content: 2 grams per litre Il Principe translates as “the prince”, and I wonder if this isn’t a play on Langhe Nebbiolo’s reputation as ‘baby Barolo’. Barolo may or not be ‘the king of wines and the wine of kings’, but these days I don’t think Langhe Nebbiolo is as much a Dauphin as a free citizen in it’s own…

Le Loup Blanc Soif Rouge

Le Loup Blanc ‘Soif ‘ 2019 Price: $19.95 750mlChannel: LCBO Vintages (#20955) Producer: Vignoble du Loup BlancCountry: FranceRegion: LanguedocAppellation: Pays d’Oc IGPCertification: Organic Grapes: Grenache 50%, Cincault 50%Alcohol by Volume: 13.5%Sugar: 2 grams per litre Look for this lovely, and surprisingly elegant wine, which came out in the October 30 LCBO Vintages release. It’s a super food friendly wine, light on its feet and bright with Grenache red cherry notes.…